A sunrise hike with one of my sons last weekend brought some spectacular desert views….
…with perspectives elevated above the fray that exists between here and there…
…treasures of an Arizona desert morning….
August 2, 2018
Straight out of the camera…no artificial color added….
Heading home and slow-going with the west-bound traffic at exactly 6:30 pm yesterday…with a good view of the approaching storm.
Eleven minutes later in the below photograph…wasn’t difficult driving, but it was hard to make quality one-handed photographs with the truck blowing side to side….
Very often we see these desert wind storms, dust storms, or haboobs making a lot of noise and throwing a bunch of crap in the air with not much else happening…
…or not happening in our particular part of town, anyway. It’s often that one side of town gets the dust and another side gets the rain….
So it was nice to finally see some rain drops populate the windscreen on the truck…heading north on the 303 now from the I-10…at 6:55 pm in the below photo.
Wipers are coming on soon….
Looking west toward the White Tank Mountains in the below photo…huge dumping of rain….
The above photo (kind of sucks) is nowhere near as dramatic as this image from the Washington Post in July of 2016, but it’s still pretty cool…rain bomb…micro-burst….
Broken trees blowing onto the freeway off ramp…getting close to home….
It’s 7:06 pm in the above photo…36 minutes since the first photo above….
A welcome river of rain washing down our neighborhood street above….
And this is the morning after…two broken tree tops…which is very minimal compared to what I found in other places in the neighborhood…huge trees that must have stood for close to 20 years blown over and crashed through walls and into houses…other big ones uprooted and laying into the street…beautiful mesquite trees in the park toppled over….
Wonderful summer rains in the desert….
7/31/2018 at 5:48:33 am
…one must pull-over to the side of the road and capture that particular image of what one knows is an ultra-transient, fleeting, and likely never to be duplicated, moment in time.
Somewhere between six and ten miles south of the Arizona/Nevada border…on US Highway 93, southbound….
It drizzled, sprinkled, and rained for all but the first 60 miles of yesterday’s journey northward…water falling in varying strength from a solid blanket of clouds that only appeared to be too high to be willing to loose any of its bounty. Today’s return trip revealed bright sunshine blasting through and around many-sized clouds that had broken free from the earlier blanket. There were some dark spots, too, that were still intent upon delivering more water to the mountains…low clouds unraveling their weave and being dragged, blown, carried, somehow east and away from of our route.
My oldest son works as a real-estate agent, builds indoor water-features, used to work with an electrical contractor as a CAD designer…and he absolutely loves the desert. This is a photo he made over a dozen years ago when he was out at Phoenix International Raceway for a job with the electrical contractor. I’ve been past the racetrack multiple times over the years, but have never gone inside to watch an event, so I can only guess as to my son’s location when he made the photograph…somewhere facing south, as the sunrise was to his left. That is the eastern edge of the Estrella Mountains in the distance.
If you’re interested to know more about Phoenix International Raceway/ISM Raceway, you can click on this link from Wikipedia.
**Image used with permission, by JSBrill.
It’s almost funny how the best images from the hiking trip were from before I even arrived at the trailhead….
Taking Lake Mary Road from the freeway takes one, not surprisingly, past the stretch of mountain meadow that has been turned into upper and lower lakes/reservoirs…and then to another forest road turn-off that leads one to the Lowell Observatory, or to Marshall Lake. My destination was the Marshall Lake trailhead that would lead me down into the canyon and eventually to Fisher Point. Six or seven hours later found me with less than 100 photos of the excursion…and substantial joy (?) at how well (to my thinking) the images turned out from the lower Lake Mary….
I mentioned in an earlier post that I had found a trail leading into the mountains and purposed to go hiking that evening. There had been uncommon clouds over the valley for the majority of the day and I hoped they might remain into the same evening, providing a classic desert sunset. While the clouds were a slight disappointment, the view from one of the nearby peaks made-up for what was missing relative to the clouds.
For those of you not familiar with the metropolitan desert that is Phoenix, Arizona, there are several neighborhoods or areas of the city that have their own names…some of them have, and others might still become separate incorporated areas or towns, distinct entities from Phoenix-proper, but for now they are simply named-areas that are familiar to denizens and nearby others. The particular area where I now live in the extreme north of Phoenix is named Desert Hills…and for good reason.
The high daytime temperature yesterday was somewhere in the low hundreds…and I imagine that it was probably somewhere in the mid-nineties by the time I came down from the mountain and entered the neighborhood again. There had been clouds across the sky throughout the day, but they didn’t stick-around long enough to be significant with regard to the sunset…but there were bats circling the near-nighttime sky, skittering and dashing about as bats will do, finding their evening (or morning?) meals on the wing and disappearing into the blue-black shadows of the coming night.
I was walking back to my truck when I noticed the dash of white-yellow-orange-pink of the airliner passing the silhouette forms of these statuesque Saguaro cacti. If you’re interested, the tree is a Palo Verde and the more linear stalks of cactus in the lower right corner are from a single Ocotillo…..
Wishing you a pleasant evening from north Phoenix, Arizona, USA.